‘Die neue Frau on April Fools’: Photography, Photomontage, and the Rhetoric of Objectivity in the Weimar Illustrierten
Each April 1st in Weimar Germany, the popular glossy German tabloids known as Illustrierte published a series of mischievous April fool jokes. In this annual game of discerning the real news from the fake, prominent magazines tricked readers unable or unwilling to exercise their critical faculties by interspersing manipulated photographs amid the familiar array of advertisements, serialized novels, puzzles, and articles of the Illustrierten. Often critiqued as manipulating their naïve readers, the magazines’ use of fake photographs and the mixed message of their satirical sight gags astutely comment on the notion that “the camera does not lie.” Their interweaving with serious photojournalism pieces complicates the arguments of critics that the Illustrierten were exclusively naïve purveyors of distraction. Far from being trivial, April fool jokes reflect and refract the obsessions of Weimar popular culture with such modern themes as the proliferation of mass entertainment, changes in gender identity, and the emergence of the media figure of the New Woman.
✽ November 9 at 4:15 PM | 241 Hollander Hall
* Sponsored by Department of German and Russian, History, and Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures & Cultures
Mehammed Mack will give a talk on his recently published book, Sexagon: Muslims, France, and the Sexualization of National Culture. “Engaging the nexus of race, gender, nation, and sexuality, Sexagon studies the broad politicization of Franco-Arab identity in the context of French culture and its assumptions about appropriate modes of sexual and gender expression, both gay and straight” [Fordham Univ. Press]. Mack is Assistant Professor of French Studies at Smith College.
✽ Thursday, October 5 at 7:00pm to 8:15pm | Sawyer Library, Mabie Rm.
* Sponsored by Arabic Studies, Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, French, Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
@ Images Cinema
❍ All films will be with English subtitles. The screenings will be followed by Q & A.
❍ Free Admission
❖ Stefan Zweig
by Maria Schrader (2016) 1hr. 46 min.
❖ Haymatloz / Exile in Turkey
by Eren Önsöz (2016) 1h. 35m documentary
❖ Die Mitte der Welt / Center of My World
by Jakob M. Erwa (2016) 1 hr. 55 min. Drama
Sponsored by the Department of German-Russian, Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures and Cultures at Williams College, Embassy of the Federal Republic of German in Washington, DC, Austrian Cultural Forum New York, Dively Committee for Human Sexuality and Diversity, Williams College
A talk by Consul General Dr. Ralf Horlemann on the German federal election which takes place on September 24, 2017.
✽ Tuesday, September 12 | 4:00pm-5:00pm | Hollander 241
Sponsored by the Williams College Department of German-Russian, Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, German Consulate General Boston, and Embassy of the Federal Republic of German in Washington, DC
The importance of the French presidential election has rarely been this high. Since the loss of one of Europe’s main pillars – the UK, coupled with the shift in US politics under President Trump, the goals and concerns of the West are being reshaped. Nourishing itself on people’s fear, the far-right party Front National, led by the very controversial figure Marine Le Pen, has never been this close to winning an election.
Join Prof. Paul Darel, Melissa Gustave, and Katarina Vujic, after the first round of France’s presidential election, for a discussion and debate on the main stakes at play for the two final candidates and the larger concerns about the future of France.
✽ In English / everybody’s welcome
April 27th, 7pm | Schapiro 129
Barbara Zurer Pearson has been doing research on bilingual child language for 30 years, first at the University of Miami and more recently at UMass Amherst. She also collects stories and advice from parents all over the world who are raising multilingual children. In this interactive talk, she will share research findings and use a case-study approach to explore alternative strategies and solutions for real-life situations.
✽ Thursday, April 6 at 4:00pm | Griffin 3
Sponsored by the Department of Romance Languages and the Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
Professor Zayde Antrim (Trinity College) will introduce in this lecture the earliest and most enduring mapping tradition devoted to representing a superregion shaped by Islamic civilization. Emerging from the context of early Arabic geographical writing, the maps that make up this tradition were simultaneously a product of and argument for the diversity of the “realm of Islam” as consolidated by Muslim rulers between the eighth and tenth centuries, as well as its internal and external connectivity.
✽ Griffin Hall, 7 | Wednesday, April 12 at 6:00pm to 7:00pm
Sponsored by Arabic Studies, History, Global Studies, Religion, Spanish, and Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, is by many accounts the world’s most powerful political leader. What have been his chief goals, values and operating principles? What accounts for his vast popularity in Russia, even at a time of continued military engagement, low oil prices and economic recession?
Nina Tumarkin is Kathryn Wasserman Davis Professor of Slavic Studies, Professor of History, and director of the Russian Area Studies Program at Wellesley College.
March 13, 7PM Postponed – New date TBA | Schapiro 129
Sponsored by the Department of Russian and German with support from the Department of History, Programs in Comparative Literature and Global Studies, and the Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
In this display, based on the honors thesis of Hannah Benson, Class of 2017, the map is seen as a text or narrative which tells the story of a space and the people who live and work in it. “The narrative qualities of the map,” Ms. Benson says, “document physical and mental motion, reflect temporality and memory, and allow the map to recount how space is lived rather than how it is conceived.” On a visit to Paris, she asked Parisians to complete a blank map of the city in whatever way reflected their conception of Paris. The exhibition combines a selection of these personal maps with guidebooks and maps of Paris from the Chapin Library’s collections.
✽ Feb 27 through March 31, 2017 | Instruction Gallery (Sawyer 408)
Juliet Johnson, professor of political science at McGill University, will explore in her talk Russia’s quest for national identity through the political struggles over Soviet and post-Soviet-era monuments.
Johnson’s research focuses on the politics of money and identity, particularly in post-communist Europe. She is the author of Priests of Prosperity: How Central Bankers Transformed the Postcommunist World (Cornell 2016), A Fistful of Rubles: The Rise and Fall of the Russian Banking System (Cornell 2000), lead editor of Religion and Identity in Modern Russia: The Revival of Orthodoxy and Islam (Ashgate 2005) and author of numerous scholarly and policy-oriented articles.
✽ Thursday, March 9 at 7:00pm | Schapiro Hall, 129